HEAD coach Doug Sheppard admitted it was a "weekend to forget" for his Bracknell Bees, writes Dave Wright.

He was left bitterly disappointed following a 3-1 defeat at Basingstoke Bison, his former club, on Saturday, and it got a lot worse a day later when Bees were battered 7-3 by hosts Peterborough Phantoms, their heaviest defeat of the season.

And that was despite having more goal attempts than the host club in both games.

"We weren't nearly good enough," said a shocked Sheppard, whose team had gone into the weekend on the back of a superb 5-4 overtime win against league leaders Swindon.

They started well enough at a packed Planet Ice Arena and certainly made their presence felt in a goalless and rather feisty opening period which saw five players spending a couple of minutes warming the visitors' sin-bin.

And they were still a man short when Richard Bordowski opened the scoring for Bison just 43 seconds after the resumption.

The hosts were again on power-play when they went further ahead through Russell Cowley in the 29th minute.

The Berkshire Cycles-sponsored side got themselves back in the game thanks to Vanya Antonov's goal after 35 minutes with David Millner and Shaun Thompson providing the assists.

Soon afterwards, Bees' Josh Martin and Bison's Liam Morris fell out with each other and their ensuing fight saw the Bees man being head-butted.

Both were thrown out for the rest of the game, with Morris getting an additional match ban.

Sheppard's men suffered another blow when they conceded a third goal to Alex Sampford just after the 48-minute mark.

Bison were more clinical in front of goal as they scored three goals from just 14 shots, while Bees managed just one from 18.

Roman Malinik earned Bracknell's man-of-the-match vote and he also starred on Sunday, but that was no consolation for the Czech as his team were beaten out of sight at Peterborough, who were on a high following their 4-2 win at table-topping Swindon the previous day.

Bees, with skipper Joe Baird and Ryan Sutton both absent, took a 13th-minute lead through Aidan Doughty from a chance set up by Antonov and Josh Smith, however it did not last for within a minute 16-year-old Jarvis Hunt replied for Phantoms.

Scott Robson fired the hosts ahead in the 19th minute, but six minutes later it became 2-2 with Ryan Watt providing a classy finish.

Instead of giving Bracknell a boost, it was Peterborough who upped their game and it didn't take long for them to put space between themselves and their visitors.

Poor defending let in Ales Padelek to make it 3-2 on 27 minutes with Martins Susters (36th) quickly following up with the fourth.

Susters and Tom Norton added two more goals, both in power play, in quick succession to make it 6-2.

By this time, Bees had changed netminders with Dean Skinns being replaced by Danny Milton, but the latter could do nothing to prevent Nathan Long bagging his side's seventh goal in the 46th minute.

To their credit, Bees kept plugging away and forced netminder Jordan Marr into making a series of fine stops before being beaten by Thompson just before the game went into its final minute, with Stuart Mogg providing the assist.

As a result of this pointless weekend, Bracknell drop to third in the table, with 27 points from 20 games, behind Swindon (30 from 18) and Peterborough (29 from 16).

After admitting it was a weekend to forget, Sheppard added: "We have to come back stronger next weekend and play better in every area.”

And that should certainly happen, as Bees have, what at least on paper, looks an easy fixture are their visitors to the Hive on Saturday (6pm face-off) are bottom-of-the-table Invicta Dynamos, who have lost all but one of their 20 games, three of them to the Bees.

Then on Sunday (5.30pm) they travel to Romford to face third-last Raiders, seeking revenge for a 4-3 overtime loss there last month.